4 Reasons to See Birds of Prey
Birds of Prey is the latest movie with characters from the DC universe, with Harley Quinn focusing on living her best life after a break-up with the Joker despite the number of people who despise her enough to want to take her down. Her tale entangles with a trio of other women that are connected with Roman Sionis, a crime lord who is after a diamond that fell in the hands of a young teen and just happens to be one of those people who is not a Harley Quinn fan.
It’s a fun and entertaining movie, one that I enjoyed despite not usually liking rated R movies for various reasons. However, there’s plenty of talk regarding the movie and why people are not giving it a chance. Some folks believe it’s a sequel to Suicide Squad, another DC movie that didn’t go over well with audiences, when Birds of Prey stands alone — indeed, there’s literally only two minutes in the movie when Harley Quinn quickly summarizes Suicide Squad, and the context is not needed to understand Birds of Prey. Then there are folks who refuse to see Birds of Prey because they’re sexist, and that’s all the time I’m going to spend talking about them.
If you’re still on the fence about seeing Birds of Prey, perhaps the following reasons may convince you to give it a chance.
1. Ignore the Numbers
Despite the negative hype around its box office numbers, Birds of Prey hasn’t done that bad. Being rated R impacts the audience numbers, barring action-loving teens and families as a whole from seeing the movie in theaters, as well as the fact that it opened in February, one of the slowest known months for movie-goers. With that said, the movie is still on track to make its budget back with its national and global box office numbers, even if it did have the lowest weekend opening for a DC film.
2. Casual LGBT+ and Diverse Representation
Marvel teased an openly gay character for Avengers: Endgame and greatly disappointed when it was revealed it was a director cameo of a nameless character. They took over a decade to have a female-led superhero movie despite Black Widow being a prominent and popular founding character of the Avengers, and it was nearly just as long before a prominent superhero of color was on the big screen. DC is ahead of Marvel on both of those fronts.
The Birds of Prey main cast has various ethnicities, and the world surrounding them is populated just the same, mirroring the real world so well. Not only that, the opening credits showcase Harley Quinn as bisexual as well as mentioning that another of the leading ladies has a woman as an ex. Their sexualities have no bearing on their character arcs in the story — and rightly so — but the fact that the representation is there on the big screen as heroes will mean so much to so many people.
3. The Characters Are So Much Fun
Harley Quinn was a delightful narrator, having no filter and using plenty of color when describing the people that she encounters throughout the film. Renee Montoya was a tough officer, one who was burned enough by her colleagues for it to hit home, but entertaining with her zeal for fights and detective work like she was part of an 80s cop movie. Helena Bertinelli as the Huntress was only out for revenge but was still awkward enough to take the time to practice one-liners in the mirror. Dinah Lance was the type of protagonist who became a hero because circumstances dragged her into it; she was more of the exasperated “Well, shit, no one else is going to save the world,” type of hero rather than a do-gooder who wants to help because it’s the Right Thing To Do. The villains were dangerous, creepy, and intoxicating as the Black Mask and his right-hand guy Victor Zsasz, villains who you didn’t want to like but you couldn’t help but want to see what they’d do next.
Despite the strong language and a few of the gorier ideas, Birds of Prey had plenty of laugh out loud moments amid the action with the characters’ banter and story lines.
4. The Soundtrack and Fight Choreography
The soundtrack has no business being as fantastic as it is while going along with the fight scenes that makes this film so much fun. The majority of the tracks are upbeat pops that blend perfectly with the fight choreography, taking you from one kick to the next punch. The camera work for said fight choreography was a great ride, especially in the climax fight scene where we go from one leading lady to another against her opponents seamlessly.
I’ve grown up with superhero comics and cartoons, most notably the DC universe. There have been some fantastic movies featuring DC superheros — Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins trilogy, Patty Jenkins’s Wonder Woman, just to name a few — but the majority of DC’s attempt at a cinematic universe have been sub-par compared to Marvel’s slew of films within the past decade and a half.
Yet, Birds of Prey is one of those few DC movies that is worth a watch. If action movies are something you usually enjoy and you don’t mind the strong language, Birds of Prey may be up your alley.